Dai Zhiyong (戴志勇): If the People Can Learn to Compromise, Please Learn to Govern Honestly

A signed editorial in Southern Weekend looks at the reasons why a Sunshine Law is not likely to be implemented in China soon, despite widespread public support for one:

The survey also showed that 90% of people supported passing a Sunshine Act as soon as possible. The ruling party even more so sees anti-corruption as an “important political task,” as they strive to avoid the dire straights the KMT once found itself in, namely either you fight corruption and destroy the party or don’t fight it and destroy the country.

Simply put, there are two ways to bring obfuscation and hypocrisy into the light. One is to bring an end to certain powers, such as minimizing the number of personnel under a corrupt official and curbing the right to approval and allocation of resources. The powers that must be left to this person must made transparent and accountable. The other option has already won favor among the Chinese public. It is a property declaration system which originally comes from Sweden and is popular in the much of the world. A legitimate source must be provided for all income and assets worth more than 200RMB. If this can’t be done, the result is denunciation, loss of job or even incarceration. Even if there are greater powers which can be abused, it is unlikely they will avoid monetization. The problem is that this idea is useless unless there is a complete commitment to it. Even though it is a good system, we must face the fact that only 3% of official workers support it.

September 29, 2009 12:49 PM
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Categories: Law, Politics